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PERUVIANA   Meyen, 1834  (engl./ fr.)

Synonym : Cotyledon peruviana  (Meyen) Baker (1869)*

Series Racemosae

Type : Meyen s.n., Peru (Dept. Tacna, on road from Tacna to Palca, near Palca), 1830 (lost).

Lectotype : F. Photo IRN 211839 of sheet B 18248.

Etymology : Named for Peru, its country of origin.

Distribution : Peru (known only from the type locality).


First Description by Meyen in Reise um die Erde, 1. Teil, 3. Buch, p.448. 1834 :

Basal leaves obovate-cuneate, acute, fleshy.

Stem leaves lanceolate, acute.

Inflorescence laxly bracteate.

Sepals much shorter than corolla, obovate, acute, glabrous.

Stamens hardly as long as the petals.

Petals purple.

The above description is very short, it does not indicate the colour of the leaves nor their size nor any characteristic feature and thus the name can be used for any red flowered Peruvian species. In fact it has even been used for yellow and orange flowered plants, not only from Peru but also from Bolivia and northern Argentina.

Thanks to Paul Hoxey who recently went specifically looking for E. peruviana at the type locality we now know what it looks like - see photos below :

Echeveria peruviana :

Leaves green, innnermost leaves slightly glaucous, possibly somewhat more glaucous in arid periods.

Rosette diameter up to 20 cm after a rainy period, probably smaller in times of limited moisture.

Peduncle not glaucous.

Inflorescence racemose.

Pedicels short.

Bracteoles and sepals somewhat glaucous.

Sepals adpressed at corolla.

Corolla not much opened at mouth.

Note :

1. *Baker's new combination is validly published, however his description is from a plant of unknown origin which might even have been a hybrid and it differs clearly from Meyen's description of E. peruviana. Therefore it is to be ignored.


2. E. Walther's description (Echeveria p.367, 1972) is from an Argentinian plant, origin unknown, so it is to be ignored, too.

3. The cytology is not known; n = ± 50 as indicated by Kimnach (IHSP 2003) refers to a plant found near Tacna. According to Uhl's photos of this plant (Haseltonia 13, 2007) it is not identical with the correct E. peruviana.

4. Text and photos in Pilbeam, The genus Echeveria, p. 206, figs. 279 & 280 are completely wrong and misleading.

Echeveria peruviana at the type locality near Palca, 2500 m :

Photos Paul Hoxey

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